Lesson 3: Pattern Development
The project we are tackling in this class is a chip carved quilt. Quilt patterns lend themselves
very well to chip carving. Geometric in nature, various elements of a quilt pattern can be removed
to create a carved version of the fabric quilt.
If there is a quilter in your household, no doubt there will be a book, magazine, or quilting
journal in the bookcase, magazine rack, or under the bed (maybe only in my house). Get one out and
page through it thinking of chip carving rather than quilting. Look for triangles, squares, floral
shapes, and straight lines.
Not to worry if there isn’t a quilting publication in your house, go online and Google “quilting
patterns”. Click on the “Images” tab on top and waalaa…4,110,000 images in 0.32 seconds.
When looking to develop a pattern for a project like ours, this is quilt pattern chip carving paradise!
Take this pattern for instance…
This pattern is a combination of equal size triangles which, you’ll find out very soon, are the
first shape learned in chip carving. Many quilt patterns are made up of various size triangles. Larger chips (triangles in this example) are more difficult to remove than smaller chips. But the good news is that every quilt pattern I can think of that has large shapes, can be modified to be more chip carver-friendly by sub-dividing the large chips into several smaller chips. This makes them more manageable while still preserving the visual appeal of the quilt pattern.
In this example…
The triangles shown on this quilt square can be carved as can some or all of the trapezoid shapes shown in pink and dark red. This square pattern can be re-sized and then copied numerous times to fit the surface being carved. Pattern work like this can be done with tracing paper, pencil and a copy machine. For many years when I first started chip carving, that was how I developed all of my patterns.
Now I perform most of my pattern work using my computer, scanner, and printer. Copying, pasting, resizing, repositioning, cropping, and other repetitive and sometimes monotonous work can be sped up when using a computer. I still enjoy drawing patterns on my drafting table, but some pattern work is best left to Microsoft!
Pattern development for our project
The squares you will be carving are 3.75” and 5.75” square. Allowing 1/4” border so you don’t carve
right up to the edge leaves 3.25” and 5.25” square space to carve inside. All it takes is a straight
edge, pencil, and quilt image to get started! If you are more of a tracing kinda person, using
graphite transfer paper works well.
If you prefer, I’ve created some patterns that you can use to carve some squares. These patterns
will be available early next week when we start carving!
Have some fun with this pattern development. You don’t have to be an artist to create some really
cool chip carving patterns. Starting with quilt patterns is a good place to begin as there are
plenty of examples to work with.
The trivet shown below was designed and carved using a common quilt pattern. I hope this inspires you to
try creating your own quilt square patterns.
Post your questions and comments below.
Next Lesson: Chip Carving Essentials
https://www.mychipcarving.com Chip Carving
-- Marty, https://www.MyChipCarving.com, 866-444-6996